Working From Home Tax Deductions 2023
16 min read

Working From Home Tax Deductions 2023

Maximize your tax savings as a remote employee in 2023. From home office deductions to travel expenses, tap into tax deductions and save!
Working from home tax deductions in 2023
Photo by Ave Calvar on Unsplash

Can you believe we’re already halfway into 2023? Time sure does fly, especially when you're working from the comfort of your own home.

Key Takeaways:

  • In order to be eligible for tax deductions, your expenses need to be directly related to and solely for the purpose of your business or work.
  • The IRS has a simplified option for claiming the Home Office Deduction, which deducts $5 per square foot of your home office space, up to a maximum of 300 square feet
  • Per diem rates are predetermined daily allowances for meals and lodging expenses, making it easier for you to calculate your deductions.
  • Do not hesitate to consult a tax professional as every tax situation is unique to the person, state, and expenses.

Over the past couple of years, the world has witnessed a monumental shift in the way we work, thanks to a little something called the pandemic.

With countless employees bidding farewell to office cubicles and embracing the flexible lifestyle of remote work, it's safe to say that the work-from-home trend is here to stay.

But as enticing as it may be to roll out of bed and power up your laptop in your pajamas, there's one crucial aspect of remote work that you simply cannot afford to overlook: tax deductions.

Everything You Need To Know About Tax Deductions for Working From Home in 2023

If you’re already paying remote employee taxes, understanding the ins and outs of tax deductions for remote employees is an absolute game-changer when it comes to maximizing your financial well-being.

By leveraging the tax benefits specifically designed for remote workers, you can potentially save a significant chunk of your hard-earned money.

And it's not just about avoiding the common pitfalls and mistakes that can lead to audits or penalties; it's about empowering yourself to make the most of your remote work setup.

In this blog post, we're going to delve deep into the fascinating world of working from home tax deductions in 2023. We'll explore the different types of deductions you may be eligible for and provide practical tips to help you navigate the process with ease.

While we strive to provide accurate and up-to-date information, it's essential to consult with a qualified tax professional or advisor to ensure that you're making the right deductions based on your specific circumstances.

1. Home Office Deduction

home office deduction helps you deduct certain expenses related to your home office
Photo by Collov Home Design on Unsplash

Picture this: your cozy little corner of productivity, complete with a desk, a trusty laptop, and maybe even a potted plant or two. Your home office is the epicenter of your remote work universe, and guess what? It could also be your ticket to some serious tax savings.

The Home Office Deduction is a game-changer for remote workers like you. Simply put, it allows you to deduct certain expenses associated with your home office from your taxable income, potentially reducing the amount of taxes you owe.

But before you start daydreaming about all the extra cash you could be saving, it's important to understand the rules and requirements surrounding the Home Office Deduction.

And that’s what we’ll walk through right away.

Criteria for eligibility

So if you want to claim the Home Office Deduction, you need to meet some eligibility criteria. Here's the lowdown:

Exclusive and Regular Use:

Your home office space must be used exclusively for work-related activities. It should be a dedicated area used regularly for your remote work duties.

Sorry, but that corner of your living room where your cat takes naps doesn't count!

Principal Place of Business:

Your home office must be your primary place of business or where you meet clients or customers regularly.

It's where the magic happens, where you make things happen, and where you bring home the bacon (or the tofu bacon, if you prefer).

Proportionate Use:

You can only claim deductions for the proportion of your home that is used for your office. So, if your office takes up 10% of your home's total square footage, you can deduct 10% of eligible expenses.

Meeting these criteria is crucial to ensure you stay on the right side of the taxman and avoid any unnecessary trouble.

Examples of what can and cannot be deducted

Okay, let's cut to the chase. What expenses can you actually deduct under the Home Office Deduction? And perhaps more importantly, what expenses are off-limits?

It's time for a mini deduction shopping spree…

Expenses you can deduct include:

  • Rent or mortgage interest: If you're paying rent or a mortgage, you can deduct the proportionate amount based on the size of your home office.
  • Utilities: That internet bill you're staring at? Deductible. Heating, electricity, water—these are all fair game, as long as they pertain to your home office.
  • Office supplies: Did you stock up on pens, paper, sticky notes, and other work essentials? Go ahead and deduct those expenses.
  • Repairs and maintenance: If you had to fix that leaky roof or repair a broken window in your home office, you can deduct the portion of the expenses related to that space.

Now, the expenses you cannot deduct include:

  • Personal expenses: You can't deduct the cost of that cozy new couch or the beautiful artwork adorning your home office walls. Only expenses directly related to your work area are eligible.
  • Commuting expenses: Nope, you can't deduct the cost of your morning coffee run or the gas you used to drive to your favorite coworking space as it is not DIRECTLY related to your work.
  • Non-work-related portions: If you have a room that serves both as a home office and a personal space, you can only deduct expenses related to the portion exclusively used for work.

Remember that it's crucial to keep detailed records and receipts of your expenses to support your claims. So, the next time you spend money on something for work, keep the receipt.

Tips for claiming the deduction

You've made it this far, and now it's time for the cherry on top—the juicy tips and tricks that will make claiming the Home Office Deduction a breeze. Here's what you need to know:

Stay organized

Keep meticulous records of all your home office expenses, including receipts, invoices, and bills.

Consider using online tools or apps to streamline the process and make tax time a whole lot easier.

Consult a tax professional

While we're here to guide you, it's always a good idea to seek advice from a qualified tax professional.

They can ensure you're making the most of the deduction and help you navigate any complex tax regulations.

Use the simplified method

In recent years, the IRS introduced a simplified option for claiming the Home Office Deduction, allowing you to deduct $5 per square foot of your home office space, up to a maximum of 300 square feet.

This method can save you time and make the process less complicated.

Take advantage of other deductions

The Home Office Deduction is just one piece of the tax-saving puzzle. Don't forget to explore other deductions and credits available to you as a remote worker, such as business-related expenses or self-employed deductions.

By following these tips and being diligent in your record-keeping, you'll be well on your way to maximizing your tax savings and making the most of the Home Office Deduction.

2. Internet and Phone Expenses

You can deduct monthly bills related to your phone and internet expenses
Photo by Maxim Ilyahov on Unsplash

Your internet and phone services are crucial for keeping you connected, productive, and, let's be honest, entertained during those well-deserved breaks.

Even better, you may be able to claim some of those expenses as tax deductions in 2023.

So a chunk of those monthly bills related to your internet and phone expenses can potentially find their way back into your pocket. But, as always, there are a few key details to keep in mind.

Criteria for eligibility

Before we dive headfirst into claiming deductions for our internet and phone expenses, let's quickly go over the criteria for eligibility.

After all, we want to make sure you're on the right track and not inadvertently dialing up the taxman's wrath.

To be eligible for deductions, your internet and phone expenses must meet the following criteria:

Business Use

The expenses must be directly related to your business or work. This means you need to demonstrate that you use your internet and phone services for work-related activities, such as conducting meetings, communicating with clients, or performing research.

Proportionate Use

Just like with the home office deduction, you can only deduct the portion of your internet and phone expenses that are used for business purposes.

So, if you use your internet connection 70% for work and 30% for streaming cat videos, you can deduct 70% of your internet expenses.


As with any deduction, proper documentation is key. Keep records of your internet and phone bills, highlighting the business-related usage, and be prepared to provide evidence to support your claim.

Examples of what can and cannot be deducted

It's time to get down to the nitty-gritty of internet and phone expense deductions. What can you deduct, and what falls outside the realm of tax-saving possibilities?

Let's find out.

Expenses you can deduct:

  • Internet Service Provider (ISP) bills: The monthly cost of your internet service can typically be deducted, but remember, only the portion used for business purposes.
  • Mobile phone plans: If you use your mobile phone for work-related calls, emails, or other business-related activities, a portion of your phone plan expenses may be deductible.
  • Business-related apps and services: Do you pay for specialized apps or software that directly contribute to your work? In some cases, these expenses can be deducted as well.

Expenses you cannot deduct:

  • Personal use portion: Expenses incurred for personal use, such as streaming movies, gaming, or personal phone calls, are not eligible for deductions.
  • Excessive or lavish plans: While it's important to have a reliable internet connection and phone plan for work, expenses that are considered excessive or luxurious may not be deductible.

These are just examples to provide a general idea of what can and cannot be deducted. The specifics may vary depending on your country's tax laws and regulations.

Tips for claiming the deduction

Now that you’re equipped with a good understanding of what internet and phone expenses you can deduct, let's take it a step further and uncover some savvy tips to maximize your tax savings.

Here's what you need to know:

Keep meticulous records

It's crucial to maintain detailed records of your internet and phone expenses:

  • Save those bills.
  • Highlight the business-related usage.
  • And consider using expense tracking tools or apps to streamline the process.

Separate business and personal usage

To make your deductions easier and more accurate, consider having a separate business phone or a dedicated line for work-related calls.

This allows you to clearly differentiate between personal and business usage when it comes to deductions.

Utilize a reasonable estimate

If tracking exact usage seems like a daunting task, you can use a reasonable estimate based on the proportion of your work-related activities.

Just make sure your estimate is reasonable and well-documented.

Stay informed about tax regulations

Tax laws and regulations can change over time, so it's important to stay up to date with any updates that may impact your internet and phone expense deductions.

Consulting with a tax professional will ensure you have the most accurate and current information.

3. Equipment and Supplies

Expenses related to equipments and supplies solely used for your home office can be deducted
Photo by Jeff Sheldon on Unsplash

We're about to dive into a world filled with shiny gadgets, productivity-boosting tools, and essential supplies that keep our workstations humming.

When it comes to working remotely, having the right equipment and supplies can make all the difference. From your laptop and noise-canceling headphones to that ergonomic chair that saves your back from turning into a pretzel, these items are the unsung heroes of your work-from-home setup.

Now, over to the best part. You might be able to claim some of the expenses associated with them as tax deductions.

Criteria for eligibility

Before we start dreaming about deducting every shiny gadget and supply we can get our hands on, let's review the criteria for eligibility.

Understanding what qualifies as deductible is crucial to ensure you're making legitimate claims and staying on the right side of the taxman.

To be eligible for equipment and supplies deductions, consider the following criteria:

As always, the items you're deducting must have a direct and exclusive connection to your work.

You need to show that you use them for business-related activities, such as:

  • Conducting your remote work.
  • Communicating with clients.
  • Or enhancing your productivity.


The equipment and supplies should be necessary for your work. This means they must be essential and directly contribute to your ability to perform your job effectively and efficiently.


As with any deduction, proper documentation is key.

Keep records of your equipment and supplies purchases, including:

  • Receipts.
  • Invoices.
  • And any other relevant paperwork.

These documents will be crucial when supporting your deduction claims.

Examples of what can and cannot be deducted

Now that we understand the criteria, let's explore some examples of what you can and cannot deduct when it comes to equipment and supplies.

Expenses you can deduct are:

  • Computers, laptops, and tablets: These are essential tools for remote work and can typically be deducted if they're primarily used for business purposes.
  • Printers, scanners, and other office equipment: If you need these devices to perform your work efficiently, a portion of their costs may be deductible.
  • Office supplies: Think pens, paper, notebooks, ink cartridges, and other supplies directly related to your work. These are often deductible expenses.

Now, the expenses you cannot deduct:

  • Personal use portion: Expenses for items that have a personal use component, such as a laptop you also use for personal activities, cannot be fully deducted. Only the portion used for business purposes is eligible.
  • Non-work-related items: Items that are not directly related to your work, such as personal gadgets or recreational equipment, generally do not qualify for deductions.

Tips for claiming the deduction

Now that you're well-versed in the deductibility of equipment and supplies, let's explore some tips to maximize your tax savings.

Here's what you need to keep in mind when claiming this deduction:

Keep detailed records

Maintaining thorough records of your equipment and supplies purchases is essential. Save receipts, invoices, and any other relevant documentation to support your deduction claims.

Digital record-keeping tools can be especially handy for staying organized.

Separate personal and business use

If you use certain items for both personal and business purposes, ensure you keep track of the proportionate usage.

Deduct only the portion that is used exclusively for work-related activities.

Consider depreciation

Some equipment may qualify for depreciation deductions, which spread the cost of the item over its useful life.

You need to consult with a tax professional to determine if and how depreciation can benefit you.

Stay informed about tax regulations

Again, tax laws and regulations can change, so it's crucial to stay updated on any updates or revisions that may impact your equipment and supplies deductions.

You may seek professional help whenever needed.

4. Travel Expenses

You can also deduct travel expenses that are directly related to work purposes
Photo by Amos Bar-Zeev on Unsplash

Although you have the privilege to work from home, you might be required to travel for your work purposes.

It could be for meeting your clients or attending a conference. As long as it’s solely for your work, those expenses can potentially translate into tax savings.

Travel expenses include:

  • Transportation: This includes airfare, train or bus tickets, rental cars, and even rideshare services like Uber or Lyft.
  • Accommodations: The cost of hotels, Airbnb rentals, or other lodging arrangements during your work-related trips.
  • Meals: The expenses for meals while you're away on business.
  • Baggage and shipping: Costs associated with shipping work-related materials or baggage fees for your business-related trips.
  • Other business-related activities: Fees for attending conferences, networking events, workshops, or any other work-related activities during your travels.

Now that you have an idea of what travel expenses are, let’s get right into its criteria for eligibility.

Criteria for eligibility

Ok, time to check your eligibility for the deduction of travel expenses.

To be eligible for travel expense deductions, consider the following criteria:

The expenses must be directly related to your work. This includes travel for:

  • Business meetings.
  • Conferences.
  • Client visits.
  • Or other work-related purposes.

Distance and duration

The travel must take you away from your tax home, which is generally defined as your regular place of business or employment.

Additionally, the duration of your travel must be considered temporary, typically lasting less than one year.


As with any deduction, proper substantiation is essential.

Keep detailed records of your travel expenses, including:

  • Receipts.
  • Itineraries.
  • And any other relevant documentation that supports the business nature of your travel.

By ensuring your travel expenses meet these criteria, you'll be well on your way to jet-setting through tax season with potential savings in your pocket.

Examples of what can and cannot be deducted

Now that we know the criteria, let’s get into some examples.

Remember that individual circumstances and local tax regulations may vary, so it's always best to consult with a tax professional for personalized advice.

However, here a general list of expenses you can deduct:

  • Transportation: Flights, train or bus tickets, rental cars, and transportation services directly related to your work-related travel.
  • Accommodations: The cost of hotels, Airbnb rentals, or other lodging arrangements while on business trips.
  • Meals: The cost of meals incurred during your work-related travels, as long as they're not extravagant or considered personal expenses.
  • Business-related activities: Fees for attending conferences, workshops, seminars, or other work-related events during your travels.

Expenses you cannot deduct:

  • Personal expenses: Costs that are unrelated to your work or personal side trips taken during your business travels are generally not deductible.
  • Luxury or extravagant expenses: While you can deduct reasonable business expenses, lavish expenses that go beyond what is considered ordinary and necessary may not be eligible for deductions

Tips for claiming the deduction

Now, over to the tips for claiming the deduction.

Consider taking these tips into account if you’re on the verge of claiming travel expense deductions:

Keep organized records

Maintain thorough records of your travel expenses, including:

  • Receipts.
  • Itineraries.
  • And any supporting documentation.

This will help you substantiate your claims and ensure accuracy.

Separate personal and business expenses

Clearly distinguish between personal and business expenses during your travels.

Only claim deductions for expenses directly related to your work-related activities.

Understand per diem rates

In some cases, you may use per diem rates, which are predetermined daily allowances for meals and lodging expenses.

Familiarize yourself with the IRS guidelines on per diem rates for different locations and types of travel.

Consult with a tax professional

Given the complexity of travel expense deductions, it's always a good idea to seek guidance from a tax professional.

They can help you navigate the intricacies of travel deductions and ensure you're maximizing your tax savings within the legal limits.

That’s it. You’re pretty much ready to explore the world while potentially saving on your tax bill.

Buckle up, and get those tickets booked!

5. Other Tax Considerations for Remote Employees

You should also research state tax obligations and self employment taxes when working from home
Photo by Windows on Unsplash

We've covered a lot of ground so far in our quest to uncover the world of tax deductions for remote employees. But before we wrap up this tax-saving adventure, there are a few more gems of wisdom to explore.

While deductions have been the star of the show thus far, it's important to remember that taxes are a multi-faceted beast.

Beyond deductions, there are various other factors and considerations that come into play when you're working remotely, such as:

There are also lesser-known deductions that can help remote employees like you maximize your tax savings even further.

A few examples are:

  • Continuing education expenses.
  • Home office improvements.
  • And professional memberships and subscriptions.

Remember, these deductions can vary depending on your specific circumstances and local tax regulations.

So, as we always suggest, consult with a tax professional to determine your eligibility and ensure you're making accurate deductions.

Overview of tax credits and deductions available to remote employees

Tax credits and deductions are like the superheroes of the tax world, capable of slashing your tax bill and putting more money back in your pocket.

As a remote employee, you may have access to specific tax credits and deductions that can further reduce your overall tax liability. Let's explore a few noteworthy ones:

Child and dependent care credits

If you're a remote worker with children or dependents, you may qualify for the Child and Dependent Care Credit.

This credit helps offset a portion of the expenses you incur for childcare or dependent care services, allowing you to juggle work and family responsibilities with a little extra financial relief.

Retirement contributions

As a remote employee, you may have the opportunity to contribute to retirement accounts such as an Individual Retirement Account (IRA) or a Simplified Employee Pension (SEP) IRA.

Contributions to these accounts may be tax-deductible, providing a double benefit of saving for your future while potentially reducing your taxable income.

Health savings account (HSA) deductions

If you're enrolled in a high-deductible health plan, you may be eligible to contribute to a Health Savings Account (HSA).

HSA contributions are tax-deductible, and the funds can be used for eligible medical expenses.

Tax implications of working as an independent contractor

As a remote worker, you may find yourself working as an independent contractor, providing services to clients or companies.

While this offers flexibility and autonomy, it also brings specific tax implications to the forefront. Here are a few key considerations:

Self-employment taxes

As an independent contractor, you're responsible for paying both the employer and employee portions of Social Security and Medicare taxes, commonly referred to as self-employment taxes.

Understanding your self-employment tax obligations and setting aside funds accordingly can help you avoid surprises come tax time.

Estimated tax payments

Unlike traditional employees who have taxes withheld from their paychecks, independent contractors must make estimated tax payments throughout the year.

These payments typically cover income tax as well as self-employment taxes. Staying on top of your estimated tax payments can help you avoid penalties and ensure you're meeting your tax obligations.

Working as an independent contractor provides unique opportunities and responsibilities.

It's crucial to stay informed about the tax implications and obligations specific to your contractor status.

Seeking guidance from a tax professional who specializes in self-employment can be invaluable in navigating this aspect of your tax journey.


Understanding tax deductions is crucial for remote employees like us. It empowers us to minimize our tax liability, keep more of our hard-earned money, and make informed financial decisions.

While we've covered a lot of ground, tax laws and regulations are ever-evolving. It's essential to stay up to date and consult with a qualified tax professional who can provide personalized advice based on your specific circumstances.

To continue your tax-saving journey, here are some additional resources that can assist you in navigating your tax obligations as a remote worker:

You may also engage with online communities of remote workers and freelancers who share their experiences and insights on managing taxes and deductions.

Platforms like Reddit can be a valuable source of information.

Remember that understanding tax deductions is not only a financial game-changer but also a testament to the determination and resourcefulness that define the remote work revolution.

Here's to maximizing our tax savings, embracing the freedom of remote work, and thriving in our virtual offices. Happy tax-saving!

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